CHC’s pastors and youth leaders engage parents of the youth to forge better understanding, rapport and communication through the first of a series of Meet-the-Parents sessions.
By Eugene Teh
Over the weekend of Feb. 23 and 24, the youth pastoral team of City Harvest Church held a meeting with the parents of youth under their mentorship.
“With the many Emerge events lined up this year, the youth pastoral team wanted to create a communication channel where parents and pastoral staff can work together to help young people grow in the Lord, build stronger relationships with family and friends, and also excel academically. Having a Meet-the-Parents session will enable the pastors and zone supervisors to hear directly from parents about their children, build better rapport and understanding to work with them on helping the youth,” shared youth zone supervisor Lee Yi Lun.
A total of 30 sets of parents, whose children are part of CHC’s youth congregation, turned up for the session.
In order to help parents capture the purpose of Emerge, Lee shared the 3 “E” vision—that every youth will emerge to live for Christ, be empowered with necessary life skills to achieve academic success and Christ-like character, and to engage the world.
During the Q&A session, queries raised by parents included concerns about post-service and post-cell group curfews, cell group locations, expenditure of their children in the company of the cell-group as well as the nature of activities and conversation among peers in the cell group.
“We encourage our cell group leaders to ensure that their members are home latest by 11 p.m, and very often if they are in lower secondary, we will get the older members or leaders to accompany them home,” said Lee of the prevailing approach among youth leaders toward their members, curfew or no curfew.
Another zone supervisor, Ong Wei Ren, whose members range from secondary school youth to working adults, reassured parents of his personal commitment to noting and honoring the individual curfews of his members.
With regards to peer activities, one parent indicated the popularity of video games among the youth and hopes that the church could make a departure from such a culture.
“Once in a while we organize events such as Sports Mania where we have a day of outdoor play and sports; we find that playing sports is one of the greatest ways to attract young people,” explains zone supervisor Wayne Choong.
For closer follow-up about their children’s involvement in cell group and church activities, parents are encouraged to correspond directly with their children’s individual cell group leaders.
“Before the meeting, one issue I had was regarding the timing of my daughter returning home after cell meetings and activities, but now after the meeting, I’m very confident that the leaders will help me with it,” said Esther John, 42.
Added Jemas Yeo and Vanessa Seah, whose son Sean is in Primary 6 this year, “Thank you and all the Emerge pastors for organizing this session for us. We believe that Sean will move on comfortably from children church to a youth CG. With so many good things in store, it will definitely be a great year for Sean!”